Clash of the Champions Count-Up – #21: Cover Your Eyes! It’s Erik Watts!

Clash of the Champions 21
Date: November 18, 1992
Location: Macon Coliseum, Macon, Georgia
Attendance: 7,500
Commentators: Jim Ross, Jesse Ventura

Egads 1992 WCW. This is the stuff that nightmares are made of. After the summer ended and the NWA decided to take control of the company again because they wanted their 9 seconds in the sun again, things went way downhill in WCW because the big bad NWA decided they needed to reset everything because it was getting too good. They had set up a massive tag tournament to crown official tag champions and it was the sole focus of television for a long time. This is WCW after it because they had to restart everything. Let’s get to it.

The opening video is just about the matches tonight. This looks bad.

We see the weigh-in for the battle of the sexes match later. This results in seeing Paulie in his underwear. Madusa and Dangerously fight of course.

Tony is with Bill Watts and I still hate him. Why couldn’t they just have a character rather than the actual boss in there?

Teddy is with Michael Hayes who introduce the show I guess. Oh ok there’s a bounty on Erik Watts and they want to get it. The Freebirds that is. In an unrelated note, Brian Pillman is hurt and is at ringside.

Yep there he is on crutches with a knee injury. He can’t fight Brad Armstrong who isn’t happy. Pillman beats him up with his crutches and is disqualified before the match starts. The match starts anyway and goes for thirty seconds with Pillman winning due to Armstrong being hurt. Pillman was turning heel if you didn’t get that.

We get a clip from Halloween Havoc where Dangerously went on a huge rant against Madusa because she was a woman and fired her in a semi-famous bit. Madusa kicked him in the face to wild cheering. We get workouts from both of them, including a funny bit where Paulie fights a jobber and punches him, turns around so Austin can hit him, and then pins him.

We also see a showdown between Dangerously and Madusa where Paul runs his mouth so much that the rest of the Dangerous Alliance leaves him and he makes Madusa cry. She goes off on him and he runs for his life. Hayes is with Heyman and apparently he’ll have an arm tied behind his back. This anti-women thing is great from Paul as you have to wonder how much was legit. Paul: the only sacrifice women make is when they’re 16 and in the back of their boyfriend’s car. WOW.

Arn Anderson/Bobby Eaton vs. Kensuke Sasaki/Erik Watts

Ok so this is a bounty match. Watts is AWFUL and everyone hated him but they kept pushing him anyway because his daddy was the boss. They also gave him a big story with a bounty being on his head. Whoever hurts him gets $10,000 from Paulie. Eaton and Watts start us off.

Watts can’t do anything here as would be the case for his entire run. There’s one heck of a drinking game in there as you take a shot every time Watts does something that isn’t quite a wrestling move but was supposed to be one. You’ll die of alcohol poisoning in minutes. Anderson comes in and something tells me his thought process is “why do I have to deal with this garbage?”

Sasaki comes back in and is oddly enough a face here. That’s not something you see very often at all, at least outside of Japan. He’s not much better than Watts as he botches a monkey flip from Eaton. Sasaki is compact and very strong. I like that old school WCW ring skirt as it’s the first one I remember from when I was a kid.

Anderson might have a bad knee. He’s barely in there at all so maybe there’s something to it. Watts is back in now and he’s just bad. It’s not his fault mind you as he needed to be in some indy company for a few years just to get experience. He wasn’t ready for this exposure and his nerves made him a lot worse. Watts gets an STF on Eaton to end this.

Rating: D-. Yeah this was bad. When Kensuke Sasaki is the best guy on a team, you know something is bad. This was pretty weak for the vast majority. Wait…that would imply there was a good part and that certainly wasn’t the case here. Watts was just awful but like I said it’s not his fault. This was a bad match and it didn’t advance anything. Oh and Bobby Eaton and Arn Anderson, two of the best tag team wrestlers ever, had to job to these guys. That’s sad.

Teddy Long and his new protégé say that they’ll knock out Scotty Flamingo. It’s Johnny B Badd if you were wondering.

Flamingo is with his trainers, Vinnie Vegas (Kevin Nash before he meant anything) and Diamond Dallas Page, say that Flamingo is ready. Flamingo’s more famous name: Raven.

Johnny B. Badd vs. Scotty Flamingo

This is boxing with three two minute rounds. Why do we get so many boxing matches in wrestling companies? Why can’t one in ring competition be enough? Round one starts with Badd pounding the face of Flamingo. Keep in mind that Badd was a very legit amateur boxing champion so he knows what he’s doing here. Flamingo cheats with wrestling stuff when the Vegas Connection (the more famous guys’ tag team name) and Badd just destroys him with basic boxing stuff, including a BIG knockdown to end it.

Between rounds the heels fill Flamingo’s glove with water which makes it more or less lethal. Flamingo can barely get up to fight as he’s been destroyed so far. Badd peppers him a bit more until Page gets up on the apron and Flamingo gets one big right hand with the loaded glove and that’s enough for Flamingo to win. No rating due to it being a big comedy angle.

We preview Starrcade 92 which is another Battlebowl. They air a clip from last year’s show where Sting got his head handed to him for the whole night before pulling out the miracle win. When I say clip I mean about five minutes worth. The show is on Monday too.

They do the first match’s draw here, and it’s Cactus Jack/Johnny B. Badd vs. Dan Spivey/Heavy Metal Van Hammer. What a coincidence that Jack and Hammer are feuding at this point too.

There’s a wrestling rap album. As in an album of rap songs about wrestling. Oh dear.

Cactus Jack/Tony Atlas/Barbarian vs. Ron Simmons/Too Cold Scorpio

Ok so Simmons is world champion and is feuding with various guys because they wanted to make Simmons seem like he had something to do while making the WCW Title a midcard title so that guys like Great Muta and Chono, NWA guys, could be the REAL focus of the show. Simmons vs. Barbarian was the WCW Title match at Halloween Havoc. Let that sink in for a bit.

This is Scorpio’s debut and the good guys sprint to the ring with the announcers having no clue what Scorpio’s name is. This match with having only one white guy in it is Watts’ attempt to make the company believe he’s not racist and of course he made the black dude worthless and the title a joke until Sting saved it. Jack is legit injured here so he was a manager for the most part. Somehow injured he was miles ahead of the guys he managed.

Atlas looks like a freaking tank here. There was supposed to be some guy named Robbie Walker as Simmons’ partner. Considering this is Scorpio when he was young and in awesome shape and totally mind blowing, I think he upgraded. Yeah he’s 27 here as is Jack so both guys are young and just awesome. Scorpio misses a moonsault completely and kicks Jack in the head so he has to tag.

Jack and Simmons now as Barbarian was in there all of 10 seconds. Remember: Jack is badly hurt here but he’s the only credible guy on his team. Ah, it’s the #1 contender: Barbarian. Yes that Barbarian. It’s weird hearing them constantly saying “Simmons’ partner” because they really don’t know who he is. Atlas comes in and is just old. He’s still ripped though so that helps.

Barbarian beats on him a bit but then Jack has to be the one to get kicked in the head. Hot tag to Scorpio who blows the roof off the place. He was SO far ahead of his time it’s not even funny. Barbarian misses the big boot to Simmons which kills Atlas and with Simmons holding the other two off, Scorpio unleashes the 450 which is more or less the national debut of it and you can’t hear Ross’ commentary (which is more or less him losing his mind) over how loud the fans are. Naturally that gets the pin.

Rating: B-. This was to do two things: further the Simmons vs. Jack’s team feud and the bigger one: make 2 Cold Scorpio look AMAZING. To say the very least regarding the second one, JACKPOT. The fans loved him as more or less he was a 240 pound Rey Mysterio and keeping in mind this is 1992, this was completely revolutionary stuff. Awesome debut and everything worked like a charm. Match sucked when him or Jack wasn’t in there though.

Jesse talks to the newcomer and Simmons, who says he’s ready to overcome the odds. He introduces his new partner who says he’s ready for anything.

Tom Zenk and Johnny Gunn go into a clothing store and women mob them. This could not be any more pointless.

A clean shaven Rick Rude says he’s going to even the score with Sting. This is part of the King of Cable tournament which was apparently over the stuff the ropes were made of. Such a shame they didn’t tell us that until after the finals.

We talk about the World’s Strongest Arm Contest, which was a legit arm wrestling tournament. Van Hammer wound up winning the thing and that’s about it.

Dangerously says he’s a man.

Paul E. Dangerously vs. Madusa

This has a five minute time limit and Hayes is with Dangerously. He’s billed as the Psycho Yuppie. He has an arm behind his back too. A person with blonde hair and covered from head to toe runs in and Paul shatters his phone over her head. And as anyone could tell, it’s not Madusa but rather a jobber that was paid off I guess. Paul figures out what’s going on and you would think the Psycho theme started playing or something as they’re terrified.

She comes in and beats the tar out of Paul. This was her only thing she ever really did but it was a far cry from Chyna who was actually interesting when she did these things. All Madusa so far as would be expected. They go back into the locker room as Paul tries to run but she carries him back on his shoulder. Their chests are the same size apparently. Who is that good for actually?

Hayes trips up Madusa with two minutes to go so Dangerously can get in some cheap shots. He goes up top and hits a double axe but she’s up almost immediately. Let the pain be distributed as it’s all Madusa of course. And there go his clothes. He runs away for the last fifteen seconds or so. He was never seen in WCW again. Not going to rate this as it wasn’t a match and was a lot of just comedy stuff that went nowhere. Also, is there ANY reason to not have Madusa beat him here?

We look at the King of Cable tournament, which apparently IS about cable TV. I hate this company at times. The semi finals are Dustin vs. Vader and Sting vs. Rude, which is tonight.

Vader and Race reaffirm Vader’s awesomeness.

King of Cable Semi-Finals: Sting vs. Rick Rude

Larry Zbyszko, Hiro Matsuda and Ole Anderson are judges in case this goes to a 20 minute tie. Rude is US Champion at this point. He looks so odd clean shaven. Rude attacks early with lots of neck stuff to set up the Rude Awakening later on. Sting works on the ribs which I guess can work as they’re related to the back for the Scorpion. Far more Sting than Rude here.

Jesse talks about the thought process here as Sting needs to impress the judges while also trying to get a win which is rather true. The idea here is that Sting is trying to keep the advantage and just ride the time out which isn’t really a face thing to do but it’s a way to win.

Sting, like the idiot that he is, goes for the Stinger Splash against the railing and as usual it MISSES COMPLETELY. Why would you go for a move that has never hit once? Even Flair has gotten his shot off the top to work once or twice. Rude takes over and hooks a camel clutch at the halfway point. Jesse says Sting is ahead so far. He was usually honest which is rather refreshing.

Things slow WAY down with Rude on offense. Lots of chinlocks and lots of big heavy strikes. He was never a power man but he hit really hard. Rude tries to cannonball down onto Sting but misses and here comes Sting again. Under five minutes to go and it’s still Rude in control with a bearhug now. Less than four minutes left now as you have to go with Rude at this point.

I love how they’re not even trying to hide the fact that this is going to a draw. Everyone knew it but they don’t even bother suggesting that someone could get a clean win. Sting is in big trouble here with two minutes to go. He slams Rude off the top though and here comes the painted one. A cross body off the top gets two. Sting gets the Splash and goes for the Deathlock as time expires. The judges give it to Sting 2-1 with Larry voting for Rude. I’m not sure on that but I can see it I guess.

Rating: B. This was very different as they had to mess around with the style out there due to the judge aspect but it worked very well I thought. These two feuded for well over a year and it was no different here with it being pretty solid. This is another great example of psychology as they had to try to impress three people and survive. This worked very well I thought with Sting and Rude always meshing very well.

Tag Titles: Ricky Steamboat/Shane Douglas vs. Dustin Rhodes/Barry Windhams

Don’t worry about which titles these are. More or less they’re the WCW Titles and that’s all we’re going to go into it. Shane vs. Dustin to start us off. Notice here that the NWA stuff is going on last and is the featured contest even though it has less star power and is a lower match on the card overall but goes last anyway because it’s the NWA part. Most fans and definitely the majority of casual fans wanted to see Sting and have no reason to watch now. That’s bad booking and can probably be blamed on the NWA.

This is going to go rather slow as it has some time to work with for once. Oh Barry and Dustin are champions here if I forgot to mention that. Steamboat vs. Windham now in a battle of a future vs. former world champion. They go to the floor and Barry is being a bit more aggressive than you would expect from a face champion. Sweet goodness Steamboat can throw a chop.

Shane looks so out of place here but he’s holding his own here for the most part. I was right about the time prediction as this is going rather slowly. That doesn’t mean it’s bad as we’re getting some nice teamwork here. Barry vs. Shane at the moment. Shane misses a cross body and eats rope so it’s off to Dustin who wrestles away. Dustin and Ricky don’t like to strike that much.

Lots of tags by the champions. They work on the arm and tag in and out probably five times in a minute. The idea there: don’t let one guy get winded at all. Smart tag wrestling there. All champions here as Shane is in a lot of trouble. This is definitely an old school style going on here and it’s a bit hard to sit through in long stretches. Hey it’s the NWA though so it has to be great right???

Off to Steamboat finally and we get an issue as Dustin accidentally headbutts Steamboat in the groin on a leapfrog but Dustin won’t cover him because it wasn’t fair. Windham is PISSED about this so he tags himself in and covers for two. Atomic drops and a lariat get two but Dustin breaks up his partner’s cover because he’s hurt. He even pops Windham and Barry turns into Shane’s belly to belly to switch the titles.

Rating: B-. This one is hard to call as it’s technically great but at the same time it’s rather boring at times. The ending helps it a lot as there’s a lot of thinking here as you have the titles change because one guy doesn’t want to cheat to win and one says win at all costs. This was a good match but it’s one of those matches that isn’t for everyone at all.

Dustin leaves so Barry yells for him which is kind of funny sounding. Barry pays him back for the punch and hits a jumping DDT to leave Dustin laying. Oh and a superplex to.

After the last break Jesse is with the new champions but Barry runs in to crack their heads with a chair.

Overall Rating: C+. This was ok. I wasn’t sure what to expect here and while there are a ton of issues with it, it still comes off pretty well. The idea was to put a focus on wrestling but the problem was that the stories absolutely sucked for the most part. That’s fine, but at the same time you need to have something to work with. This was a bad era for the company, but mainly because the NWA wouldn’t get out of the way. Not a bad show but certainly not for everyone.

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  1. Mando>Eddie says:

    “When Kensuke Sasaki is the best guy on a team, you know something is bad.”

    Sometimes you say stuff like this and it displays your ignorance on any wrestling that’s not contemporary mainstream US.

    Watch Sasaki vs. Kobashi and tell me it’s not an “A”:

    klunderbunker Reply:

    I’ll pass thanks.

  2. Mando>Eddie says:

    And I’ll pass on reading your biased stuff anymore.

    klunderbunker Reply:

    I believe you’re confusing biased with “I don’t like puro.”